Thursday, January 13, 2005

The Finite Amount of Patience

Today I have finally given up with one class and for the remaining two weeks of actual teaching time left, I will get them to do workbook and worksheet activities.

I believe that each of us has a finite amount of patience and for some people its larger than others. I would like to think that mine is pretty large but today mine ran out. I have a P3 class that has 2 really bright kids but unfortunately, they are ill disciplines, rude, disruptive, distractive, over active kids I have out of all my classes. Unfortunately, they then lead the next two intelligent boys down the same road.

Their favourite activity at the moment is to jump up and down behind my back when they think I am not looking. Also whenever the word bottle is mentioned, one of them always shouts bottom! Yes, yes, very good. Now shut up. Looking back I don’t think they have ever shown any respect to me through the full year. They go through the motions sometimes but actual respect, I don’t think so. They also like to shout out almost random words or phrases when I am asking a question ie “where is the meat?” Some of the class will go “ in the fridge” but one of these two clowns will shout out “in the bathroom!” When I ask them a simple question they pretend not to understand. And use impolite Thai to me - ARAI WA? They think I don’t hear and understand what they say but I know enough and hear enough to understand they are being disrespectful.

I have tried involving them in as many activities through the lesson as possible to keep them occupied and interested but as soon as they stop the activity, they start acting up again. They are not interested in listening to other peoples attempts, they are only concerned about themselves. I really don’t want to pick them exclusively for activities as I am aware I am already giving them far too much of my time during a class as it is. The others deserve it far more.

I have sent a letter to their parents, I have shouted them down in front of class, I have given them low marks on their report cards, I have given them lines, I have stood them in a corner, I have had our Thai staff speak to them, I have embarrassed them in front of the rest of the class but as soon as they go out the classroom door all is forgotten and they are laughing and joking about it again.

Of course, what happens when they do this is that the rest of the class watch them or listen to them instead of to me. Now, this foursome are intelligent enough to get away with not paying attention but the rest can't. They need to listen to me and other speaking so they can get it right.

A few of the other teachers have already given up on all their classes and given the behaviour - which goes back to the lack of discipline and consequences of actions that I have moaned about before - that is hardly surprising. Sad but not surprising.

Which is all the more annoying as many of these problem kids are great out of the classroom. You see them on the street or in a corridor and its good morning teacher with a wai, how are you teacher. Rather suspiciously they are on there own or with a parent when they do this. In other words peer behaviour and maybe pressure to misbehave.

Ah well, there are only a few weeks to go and I will only miss one of two kids out the entire lot.

No comments: